deus ex machina

deus ex machina

[dey-uhs eks mah-kuh-nuh, dee-uhs eks mak-uh-nuh]
noun
1.
(in ancient Greek and Roman drama) a god introduced into a play to resolve the entanglements of the plot.
2.
any artificial or improbable device resolving the difficulties of a plot.

Origin:
1690–1700; < Neo-Latin literally, god from a machine (i.e., stage machinery from which a deity's statue was lowered), as translation of Greek apò mēchanês theós (Demosthenes), theòs ek mēchanês (Menander), etc.

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World English Dictionary
deus ex machina (ˈdeɪʊs ɛks ˈmækɪnə)
 
n
1.  (in ancient Greek and Roman drama) a god introduced into a play to resolve the plot
2.  any unlikely or artificial device serving this purpose
 
[literally: god out of a machine, translating Greek theos ek mēkhanēs]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

deus ex machina
1690s, from Mod.L. translation of Gk. theos ek mekhanes, lit. "the god from the machina," the device by which "gods" were suspended over the stage in Gk. theater (see machine). The fem. is dea ex machina.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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